Jeff Goodman leaves Fox to join loaded CBS hoops team

13 May

By Justin Young
National Hoops Report

Coaches aren’t the only ones changing jobs these days. In a major move in the college basketball media landscape, CBS announced they have hired FoxSports.com’s Jeff Goodman.

How’s that for a #SCOOP?

Goodman spent six years at FoxSports.com as the site’s senior college basketball writer. He got his start with Scout.com covering grassroots basketball and recruiting. When Scout.com was purchased by Fox Sports, Goodman immediately jumped at the opportunity to work with the nationally recognized website.

Goodman will start with CBSSPorts.com in June. He joins Gary Parrish on the national team along with four national bloggers.

How did Goodman land at CBS? Why did he make the move? What type of role will have play at the network? He explained it all to the National Hoops Report shortly after the announcement of his hiring.

NATIONAL HOOPS REPORT: Walk me the through process. Why did you take the job at CBS?

JEFF GOODMAN: “It was really difficult for me. Fox gave me an opportunity that I could have never imagined. This has been my dream job (at Fox) and I’ll tell that to anybody. It was awfully difficult because they took a chance on me and I am forever indebted to them.

“For me, moving to CBS comes down to three reasons. Number one is CBS’s commitment to college basketball. Having the tournament and their commitment is a major advantage. It exceeds just about anybody in the business.

Number two, having the opportunity to work with Gary Parrish, who I think is the best college basketball writer in America. I’ll say that to anybody on the planet. I have the ultimate respect for him. He’s such a great combination of a writer and a reporter and that’s rare. Plus, the support CBS has with four full-time bloggers – everything is there for me to do different things. I can expand myself and push myself to things that I haven’t done as much of like more investigative stuff, big picture stories because I have more help.

The third is the potential, and nothing has been guaranteed at all, to do television. I went on Seth Davis’s show a lot last year on CBS College Sports. I enjoyed that and I would love to get more experience there on that platform. With CBS having the tournament and having CBS College Sports, there is that opportunity to see if I’m any good at it.”

NHR: Yahoo! Sports has been the go-to place for breaking news on college and university scandals, if you want to call those types of things that. They’ve had a bit of a market share of that avenue. Is that the kind of thing you want to start doing at CBS?

JG: “I think I’ve been critical over the years. My biggest thing is being honest. I will write things that are good, bad, whatever as long as I can be honest with it.

Here’s the thing, when you write everyday, and I do during the season, and blogging constantly throughout the day it is going to make it more difficult for you to do some of those investigative stories. The good thing about Fox is that they never were on me about breaking stories. They let me do my thing. I was probably my own worst enemy with the blog. I wanted to make it the place where people came for college basketball news throughout the day. It was hard to do that well all the time. Now I think I will have no choice but to pull myself away from that because we have four bloggers. We have Gary Parrish. I don’t have to weigh in on everything anymore. We have people that can help.”

NHR: Are you and Gary going to have a #SCOOP off to determine who will sit in the driver’s seat throughout the course of the week?

JG: “Like I said, I am coming along to help him and he’s going to help me a ton. From a standpoint of having somebody of else, quality of life is very important. That’s one thing I didn’t bring up earlier. I can now turn my phone off for a night, for a few hours in the offseason and not worry about anything going on. Gary can do the same thing. We both have families. We both have kids that are the same age. When you go out and take your kid on a bike ride you want to be able to keep your phone in the house. Now I feel like I can do that and somebody else can do what I do, if not better.”

NHR: Do you find it funny now that the landscape of media is now concerned with who changes jobs in our industry just like we care with the moving and shaking in college basketball?

JG: “It was kind of funny because the only thing that kind of hit me when it was announced today was all the texts, emails and tweets I got. I am trying to keep up with people and you try to do the right thing by acknowledging the people congratulating you. I’m thinking ‘Oh my god, this is what is probably like when Mark Turgeon took the Maryland job the other day.’ How do you get back to everybody? It’s impossible.”

NHR: You’ve given Gary a lot of credit and rightfully so but what has allowed you to have the success you’ve had at breaking all of the coaching changes, guys going pro, transfers, etc. How hard have you had to work to put yourself in a position to be the guy that breaks the stories that matter?

JG: “Again, you need some luck. Relationships are so important. I think I’ve learned that over the last couple of years more than anything. You don’t always have to be first. Trust in anything kind of exceeds everything else. If people trust you in this business and know that you are doing it the right way, you are not trying to hurt people just to hurt people. You are writing what you believe to be is the truth then people are going to respect you and give you information. I was fortunate when I got the job at Fox who already built up a pretty good network so I was able to hit the ground running. There just aren’t too many people that have that and are in the position. I always wanted to be a college basketball writer. Writing is my background. I think the recruiting really helped me from a standpoint of looking at the sport differently and evaluating talent. I think it helps me now. Being able to do what I’ve done is a situation of being fortunate in working in recruiting to college basketball. I already had the relationships in place.”

NHR: Forecast Fox Sports if you can. What do you think happens there now?

JG: “They’ll be fine. They’ll hire a big time guy. They’ll hire somebody good. I told my bosses over there, ‘Hey listen, I want you to hire somebody really good.’ I want them to hire a big time guy. Kind of like Gary was to me over the last couple of years, it is good to have a healthy competition in whatever you do. There are really good guys in the industry like Gary, like Andy Katz and Luke Winn and Dana O’Neil and Jason King and some of these other writers. I think it is really good to have. I am hoping they get a really good writer, a good young guy that bring something to the table that I didn’t.”

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